Pregnancy and Parenting Features

Diagnosing Infant Reflux

Lots of new parents become severely worried when they notice their baby has reflux and are completely shocked that their baby cries non stop, hiccups, vomits, chokes, and appears completely miserable a majority of the time. Where is the little beautiful baby you had imagined? Don’t worry, you can realize your dream with a happy baby, but first need to have a doctor evaluate your newborn to see if he/she has reflux. Many babies do and it is not so difficult to treat. But, how will your doctor know if your baby has reflux or something else?

Many times you simply need to visit the doctor and explain what is happening with your baby and your doctor probably won’t look surprised at all. In fact, he probably hears it from patients all day long because many babies have reflux. Your doctor will then ask some questions to get a feel for how severe the reflux is. Questions such as how much food is vomited up and how often your baby displays reflux symptoms. Most of the time the doctor will review the baby’s current weight with other weights, examine baby’s ears, teeth, and throat. Additionally, the doctor will probably palpate the stomach to see if there is something else going on.

Your doctor will continue asking questions to help him decide what is going on with your baby. Questions like how your baby acts during mealtime, how often and sound your baby sleeps, and if and when he gets the hiccups. Respond truthfully and clearly so your doctor can determine what is going on with your baby. Generally after you respond your doctor will diagnose that your baby has uncomplicated reflux that should only be temporary as it typically disappears around six or nine months. If your baby does not have uncomplicated reflux but rather has GERD your pediatrician will also be able to determine this and offer treatment options.

On the off chance your doctor is unsure what is wrong with your baby he/she may order additional tests to find out what is going on and to rule out other conditions. Many times these tests involve looking inside your baby’s belly and throat to see what is going on and if there is cause for concern. These tests are rarely performed, but sometimes they are necessary and give doctors some much needed information to diagnose your infant.

After diagnosis has been reached and a medication prescribed you can be certain that within a brief period of time your baby will be feeling better. Since reflux seems like an obvious condition many parents are tempted to diagnose and treat their baby on their own. However, this is a bad idea and a doctor should be in charge of your baby’s care.

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